34 Conditions That Make Your Feet Hurt

27. Sesamoiditis

Sport Doctor London

Sesamoiditis is a type of tendonitis (tendon inflammation) that affects the ball of the foot. Because the tendons in the ball of the foot contain small sesamoid bones, they can become inflamed alongside the tendons. The two sesamoid bones are located beneath the big toe joint and provide leverage when the tendons load weight onto the ball of the foot. Running, dancing, and walking in high heels are examples of activities that frequently transfer weight to the ball of the foot and can overstress these tendons and bones, causing inflammation and pain. Sesamoid bones are unique in that they are only connected to tendons, unlike the majority of bones in the body. They interact with the tendons as they move and are stressed by the same movements. Sesamoid bones can be found in the feet, hands, and knees, but sesamoiditis is always associated with the foot bones. These bones are subjected to additional stress as a result of shock absorption while walking. The medial sesamoid, which is closer to the middle of the foot, bears more of the stress and is more commonly affected, but the tibial sesamoid can also be affected. Overuse of the tendons that interact with the sesamoid bones in the foot usually causes sesamoiditis. Over-practicing movements that transfer weight to the ball of the foot causes it in runners, dancers, and athletes. Walking can cause it in people who wear high heels, have very high arches or flat feet, or walk with an inward roll. It is also a rare side effect of gout.